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3-Step Holiday Sangria

Hosting parties and entertaining is something I have always loved to do. With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, I love having a go-to recipe that is inexpensive, easy, and tastes delicious. Sangria is always a crowd pleaser and so simple to prepare.  The cranberries and apple cider in this recipe add a festive feel and it’s great for winter months. One bottle of wine makes about 8 servings of sangria, so you can always make two batches. That is the beauty of make ahead cocktails, you can do this the night before a party!

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Holiday Sangria: 
1 (750 ml) bottle Merlot
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup brandy
1 cup apple cider
1 cup cranberries
2 medium apples
1 orange, sliced for rim
chop apples, measure out ingredients, combine in slow cooker.
cover; cook on High heat setting 2 to 4 hours, stirring occasionally.
Refrigerate 4-6 hours. Serve cold. Garnish with orange slice.

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There you have it! Pretty simply, right? All of the ingredients above can be purchased at Kroger (with the exception of the Brandy). One thing I love about Sangria is that it’s completely customizable. You can swap out the fruits for others and experiment.
 
Do you have a go-to holiday cocktail recipe that you love? Share in the comments below for your chance to win a $50 Kroger Gift Card!
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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Kroger. The opinions and text are all mine.

Easy Baked Brie Thanksgiving Appetizer

This Thanksgiving my husband and I will be hosting family at our house. 10 adults and 2 toddlers under one roof can be overwhelming enough, but add in cooking, meal prep, and cleaning? It’s enough to make anyone go slightly insane. The last thing you need is hangry guests hovering in the kitchen watching you peel 20 potatoes by hand. To keep those growling tummies at bay, I’m sharing an easy appetizer (with wine!) to ensure everyone is happy. Baked Brie is my go to appetizer because you can buy everything pre-made. There is no chopping or prep work involved. Place in the oven before your guests come over and pop open some Merlot to ensure you can cook in peace!

Baked Brie with Cranberry Jam
Ingredients
1 tube of refrigerated crescent dinner rolls
1 round of Brie cheese (do not remove rind)
2 Tablespoons Cranberry Jam
Honey for topping
Directions
Preheat oven to 350°F
Line baking sheet with parchment paper
Roll out crescent dough and divide into two
Place brie rind into center of dough & top with jam
Fold dough over the brie and wrap with remaining piece
Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes. Allow to cool for 10 minutes
Drizzle honey on top before serving
Add some crackers, apple slices, honey for dipping and voila! You have a simple appetizer that your guests will love. This baked brie pairs perfectly with Wente Vineyards Sandstone Merlot. To learn more about Wente Wines and to find out where you can purchase, go to their website here. If you live near the Bay Area, you can visit their vineyards too!
Do you have a go to appetizer that you love? Share it in the comments below!

 

Happy Fourth of July!

Happy Fourth of July! I hope you are all enjoying your holiday weekend. We’re in Charleston visiting family and despite the heat and humidity, it’s been so fun. Sidetone: How do girls wear face makeup here? I can hardly step outside without sweating immediately so I’ve been rocking the top knot and mascara only look for a few days. I wanted to give you a little table inspiration this morning in case you’re hosting family or friends today. Creating a table scape for a party does not have to be stressful or extravagant. Even though there are tons of fabulous homemade recipes out there for holiday themed food, I recommend going to the store and buying pre-made desserts and food that don’t require much prep. Target & Publix were my go to for decor items and food and all I had to do was plate the goods! While you’re shopping you can drop off balloons to have inflated which add the perfect touch to your gathering. These adorable bomb pop balloons are from an etsy shop which has a ton of great mylar options. How cute is this hot dog balloon for a summer cookout? I added this rag garland to the front of the table but it would also look cute draped along a wall for a backdrop or Photo Booth. So, grab some beers, brats and cupcakes and get your Fourth of July party started today! buy alphagan online https://medstaff.englewoodhealth.org/wp-content/languages/new/alphagan.html no prescription

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Have fun and be safe today everyone! xo buy amaryl online https://medstaff.englewoodhealth.org/wp-content/languages/new/amaryl.html no prescription

TMNT 4th Birthday

I cannot believe Henry is FOUR today! It feels like each year goes by faster than the last and it’s always so bittersweet. I usually spend the night before my kids birthday ugly crying and carb loading. Year three was our hardest as parents of a wild boy, but the last few weeks are showing some signs of change so we are hopeful that this threenager is behind us {fingers crossed}. When Henry told me he wanted a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle party my first thought was “How in the hell am I going to make this look cute?” Luckily it wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be. Our backyard is ideal for entertaining so we took full advantage of it this year. We already have a play-set, sandbox, water table and two power wheels. For the party we rented a TMNT bounce house which was a huge hit with all the kids and if you are having an outdoor birthday, I highly suggest renting one! buy aripiprazole online https://medstaff.englewoodhealth.org/wp-content/languages/new/aripiprazole.html no prescription
The set up of the party was a lot of fun and easier than previous ones. Since the entire party was outdoors, I only had 2 main tables: a dessert table and a goody bag/party accessories table which also doubled as the food table when the pizza came. When guests walked up to the party they immediately saw the table which had foam nunchucks, face masks and turtle shells for the kids to wear. buy atorvastatin online https://medstaff.englewoodhealth.org/wp-content/languages/new/atorvastatin.html no prescription
The amazing cake was created by Natalie at Cake Envy. She also designed Henry’s third birthday pirate cake and every year I get wowed even more.The cookies are also from another Atlanta local, Debbie, from Whimsical Designs. She is my go to cookie lady and I use her for all my parties and any party I’m planning for a client. You may remember her cookies from Evelyn’s first birthday and Henry’s second. I love that I can send both of these ladies a picture of what I am envisioning and they can bring it to life. buy abilify online https://medstaff.englewoodhealth.org/wp-content/languages/new/buynoprescription/abilify-no-prescription.html no prescription
I have to give a huge thank you to Dominos and New Belgium Brewing for providing the pizza and beer for the party. The beer was so refreshing and a must when Dad’s are attending a party and everyone raved about how delicious the pizza was. Be sure to check them out when planning your next party or get together!
I loved seeing Henry have such an amazing time at his birthday. It makes all the long days of planning totally worth it. Since my kids parties are always a little hectic with a lot going on, it can be hard to remember all the moments from the day. This year I decided to have a video shot by a local videographer and I cannot tell you how much I am obsessed with it. Leila was so sweet and professional and the kids loved her, which meant she had no problem getting amazing footage. I don’t know why it took me so long before jumping on the video bandwagon but there’s no turning back now. I’ve watched the video probably 100 times and it’s so nice that I can share it with family who couldn’t make the party. Want to see the video? Click here!

A special thank you to my sweet friends Jessica & Kelly for snapping pics, my mom for watching Henry and my amazing husband for always helping with set up and prep for these crazy parties I throw. Here is a full list of all the incredible vendors, without which I could not have made this party happen.

Pizza – c/o Dominos
Beer – c/o New Belgium Brewing
Cake – Cake Envy
Bounce House – Jumptastic
Number 4 – c/o Swanky Party Box
Felt Pizza Banner – c/o Little Lion Lovelies Co.
Splinter Cupcake Toppers – Toad Hollow
Custom Pizza Box Labels – Type Meets Paper
Brick Back Drop – Amazon
Green Gable Boxes – Amazon
Raphael Print – Big Chris Gallery {I purchased the digital file & had them printed larger}
Turtle Shells – DIY Instructions herexo,
Chanel 

A Floral Themed Baby Shower

From the second I found out that my best friend was pregnant with her second daughter, I knew I wanted to throw her a beautiful shower to celebrate baby #2! The whole saying “April showers bring May flowers” came to mind since the shower would be in May. Once I had a theme in my head, I went to work on sourcing unique items to make the party special. Etsy was my go to, as usual, because I love supporting small shops selling adorable baby girl clothes and finding one of a kind items.
The dresser and vanity are from an antique store which I found over 6 years ago and have been hoarding ever since. I hoped one day that I’d have a daughter and use them for her big girl room. This is the first year where I have been able to add them into party decor. I love the feminine touches that paired with the theme so well. They also have not been re-finshed so they have a vintage look. That amazing blue couch was my mothers and I have used it several times this year. It makes for the prettiest back drop!
Any get together with a bunch of women should always include a mimosa bar. They are so easy to set up, inexpensive and are always the first stop guests make. All the juices I served were from Whole Foods and I reused the Mimosa Bar sign from Evelyn’s first birthday.
The food spread consisted of pasta salad, garlic shrimp, assorted cheeses & crackers, sandwiches and a vegetable platter. I made some blueberry & lime infused water and also had plenty of non alcoholic drink options for the pregnant ladies who attended. I used vintage napkins that were my grandmothers to wrap silverware in. This was my first time using cloth napkins for a party and now I’m hooked. (If you need me I’ll be scouring Ebay for napkin lots). buy wellbutrin online https://medstaff.englewoodhealth.org/wp-content/languages/new/wellbutrin.html no prescription
Adding personalized touches to any party or event is key to make a wonderful lasting impression. The favors for all the ladies attending were mini Pinot Grigio wines with custom labels that had the mother’s name to be and the date of the shower. If you are looking for an easy way to incorporate the guest of honor, these are perfect. I also used Gardenia Labels for a friends 30th birthday party last month.
Stay tuned for a special giveaway on Friday for your chance to win all the items, plus some, in her amazing gift basket! If you are expecting a little girl soon, then I have all your floral themed needs covered 🙂 buy zantac online https://medstaff.englewoodhealth.org/wp-content/languages/new/zantac.html no prescription
Photo Booth
Jumbo Balloon: Twigs & Twirls
Floral Wreath: Alison Michel
Flower Pennant Banner: Honey Crown
Ampersand Embroidered Hoop Art: The Kitschy Stitcher
Coneflower Embroidered Hoop Art: Udel Made
Small Floral Embroidered Hoop Art: The Cotton Thread
Small Floral Embroidered Hoop Art: ISewpose
Mommy to Be Pin: Beth of All Trades
 
Dessert Table
Fabric Garland: With Love Event Decor
Cake Topper: At First Bloom
Cupcake Toppers: Grainy Day Creations
Isn’t She Lovely Print: Stop Growing Up Prints
Felt Flower Box: Sadie Bug Styles
Burlap Table Runner: Hot Cocoa Design
Balloons: Mod Party
Mimosa Bar Table
It’s A Girl Print: Garvin & Co. 
Felt Leaf Garland: Mint Envy
Custom Wine Labels: Gardenia Labels
Floral Paper Straws: Twigs & Twirls
Painted Milk Bottles: Oh Lola and Co
White Felt Flowers: Felt & Mason
Other
Invitation: KL Prints & Printable
Painted Rustic Mason Jars: Charming Tennessee
A special shout out to Sarah at Baker Blossoms for making all of the bowties and headbands for the party favors! buy zetia online https://medstaff.englewoodhealth.org/wp-content/languages/new/zetia.html no prescription

A 30th Birthday Celebration

This past weekend some girlfriends and I got together to celebrate our sweet friend Jessica turning 30. I love any reason to party and get together with friends and I believe that everyone should feel special on their birthday. Planning parties and putting together goody bags is a ton of fun for me. Also, why is it that kids parties should only get goody bags? I think every party should have them. It was a nice change to make a few for adults and not children. Since everyone that came is a mom, buy nexium online https://salempregnancy.org/wp-content/languages/new/nexium.html no prescription
I tried to compile items that I knew moms would like: champagne (duh), lip balm (you can never have too many), soaking salts (for those stressful days) and a cute hand painted wooden beaded keychain  The gold lined baskets, straws and tissue paper were from Target, of course. I was able to try the soaking salts last night and it felt like I was in a spa. I was so relaxed! These would make a great gift for Mother’s Day.
No party is complete without dessert. Lots of dessert. The cake and cupcakes were from Publix, my go to for any event, and the beer mug and cake toppers are from Etsy. Getting a basic cake and/or cupcakes and accessorizing with cute toppers or fresh flowers is a great way to add a personalized touch and save a ton of money.
There is a great outdoor development in North Atlanta called The Avalon which is my go to spot. Plenty of shopping, dining, pampering and you can drink anywhere. Basically a mecca for a moms night out. Cru Wine Bar was our first stop for some prosecco on the patio followed by dinner at The El Felix, which is by far my favorite Tex-Mex spot in Atlanta (review coming soon!) Even though restaurants at the Avalon do not take reservations, the staff at The El Felix were so accommodating and helpful. I was able to drop off the desserts, balloons and goody bags ahead of time and request their best table. Our waitstaff were so attentive and our drinks and chips were never left empty. If you are having a birthday, girls night or date night and live in North Atlanta, you have to give buy paxil online https://salempregnancy.org/wp-content/languages/new/paxil.html no prescription
Cheers to 30 years, Mrs. Garvin! I wish you the happiest of birthdays sweet friend!
Here are links to all the party shops listed above. Please check them out if you are planning something fun. They are all so friendly and helpful and I cannot recommend their products enough. Happy party planning, friends! buy plavix online https://salempregnancy.org/wp-content/languages/new/plavix.html no prescription
Balloons – Mod Party
Beer Cupcake Toppers – Wedding Wishlist
Cake Topper – Chicago Factory
Champagne Labels – Gardenia Labels
Coasters – Francine & Georgia
Eat, Drink Sign – A Modern Soiree
Keychain – A Derring Do
Soaking Salts & Lip Balm – Herbal Moon Apothecary

Valentine’s Party Recap

This past week I hosted our small playgroup for Valentine’s Day. It was so much fun making the food and setting up the dessert table & photo booth for the kids. Needless to say all the sweets were the first to go and there were about 10 three year olds on one hell of a sugar high. I always say to people, “when in doubt, dip it in chocolate and add sprinkles” which is primarily what I focused on. The oreos, pretzel rods and wafers were store bought and then dipped in melted chocolate and topped with sprinkles. Depending on how many you make it can be very time consuming however it results in a festive holiday treat. I love that you can customize the chocolate and sprinkles for whatever holiday season. This was my first time making rice krispy treats and I don’t know why I always felt so intimated by home made ones (there are only three ingredients by the way).
After they set up I cut them out with a heart shaped cookie cutter and, you guessed it, drizzled chocolate and sprinkles on top. There couldn’t be all these yummy sweets without something for the kids to wash them down with so I went with whole milk in miniature milk bottles with a sprinkle rim and donut on top (by far my favorite on the dessert table). This was such an easy and fun party to host and my love for hearts, red and pink made it that more enjoyable. The kids loved the photo props and by the end of the party the big red heart balloon was being used as a huge medicine ball by all the boys. I would say this party was a success, even with a sugar coma that lasted two days 🙂
Happy almost Valentine’s Day, friends!
xo,
Chanel

 

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